Senior News: A winning combination: exercise and naps

    6

    By Cheryl Wilkinson
    PREVIEW Columnist

    Exercise and naps. Turns out both activities improve brain health for adults 60 and better. 

    With every adult, physical activity challenges arise. Some people respond by settling into a sedentary lifestyle. The importance of physical activity for older adults cannot be emphasized enough. Even light physical activity has a significant effect on key measures of brain health. 

    The 2020 recommendations that are considered essential to maintaining a healthy brain for those 60 and better are 15 minutes a day (that’s just under two hours a week) of moderate to “vigorous” exercise or 35 minutes a day (just over four hours a week) of light physical activity. The difference in brain health for non-active adults equates to about four years of aging (JAMA, Mather). 

    With the renewal your favorite exercise brings, you can indulge in a luxurious nap. A good nap in the afternoon benefits otherwise healthy adults 60 and better, helping to maintain good cognition. Nappers score higher than their “non-napping counterparts” on cognitive measures, including memory and language, as well as lipid levels. It is worth mentioning that “unintentional” naps during the day that are part of a disrupted sleep pattern of nighttime insomnia do not offer the same rewards (General Psychiatry, Mather).

    You can go to our website to learn about ASI programs here in Pagosa Springs, find resources for wellness and aging, and make reservations with the Community Café for take-out and Meals on Wheels at: http://www.psseniors.org/.

    VITA tax preparation

    Due to COVID-19, the IRS’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program will not be coming to Pagosa Springs to prepare federal and state income tax returns this year. 

    VITA will be preparing 2020 tax returns at no charge as part of the VITA program in Durango. Please register at: DurangoVITA.org. The gross income limit this tax season is $54,000. 

    Take-out meals continue at Senior Center

    In order to continue providing meals, the Pagosa Springs Senior Center is offering take-out hot meals and a salad with a drive-up option under the portico at the Ross Aragon Community Center. 

    These meals will be available Monday through Friday between 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. There is a $4 suggested donation for lunch for those age 60 and better. If you need to have your meal delivered, please call 264-2167 to see if this option is available in your area. 

    The cost per meal for the public age 59 and under is $8.50. The meals include a salad, hot meal, drink and dessert or bread. 

    Please call 264-2167 to make a reservation for pickup. We are also continuing our Meals on Wheels program. 

    There will be no games, classes or presentations during this time. The staff will be available by phone. If you need to speak to a staff member, please call 264-2167.

    The Community
    Café menu

    Thursday, April 1 — Spinach quiche, mashed cauliflower, milk, salad and strawberry shortcake.

    Friday, April 2 — Turkey wild rice soup, steamed asparagus with lemon, cornbread with butter, milk and salad. 

    Monday, April 5 — Ham and cheese sandwich, potato salad, milk, salad and Key lime pie.

    Tuesday, April 6 — Barbecue chicken, baked beans, cornbread with butter, milk and salad.

    Wednesday, April 7 — Spinach quiche, broccolini, milk, salad and strawberry shortcake.

    Thursday, April 8 — Turkey wrap, macaroni salad, milk, salad and chocolate cake.

    Reservations and cancellations are required. You can make a reservation at 264-2167 by 9 a.m. the morning of the day you would like to drive through and pick up a meal. 

    For your convenience, you can make your reservations in advance or have a standing reservation on days you know you will always pick up. Please cancel if you cannot attend on your standing reservation days. We want to thank everyone for their support by observing our reservation policy. This helps ensure that everyone with reservations receives a meal and enables us to provide additional and healthier meals.

    Due to COVID-19, food supplies have been affected. Substitutions will be made accordingly.